Friday, March 11, 2011

Love and Chickens

Some of our hens, and our one and only rooster
My husband has always been a chicken guy. As it turns out, when you marry a chicken guy other women are willing to 'fess up about their own man's chicken aspirations. That is how I found out that a fascination with chickens can strike any man, living any kind of lifestyle, no matter what their current zoning restrictions might be.

When I first married I thought my husband's desire to build a coop was a passing fancy. Add "chickens" to the list of things that men take very seriously, such as fishing, railroads, and motor oil. If they have any interest in these things, it is not casual.

Once he promised me that cleaning chicken poo out of the coop would not become one of my chores, I was in. He renovated a shed. We inherited a small starter flock. It was nice, and it didn't take long to get over the initial "ew" about eating eggs when I knew exactly where they originated.

It was the box of chicks that really changed things for me, though. Oh, sure, you've seen chicks and you know they are cute. But the warm little box picked up from the Post Office loading bay is what won me over. It made a flurry of tiny scratching sounds when I moved it. Most amazing, the box weighed almost nothing as it sat on my lap, quietly peeping.

For a week the chicks lived in a larger box on top of my desk. One in particular used to stretch his tiny fluffy neck to its limit to watch me type hour after hour. Today he's our rooster. I don't get to lure him into my hand to sleep anymore, but look how lovely he is.

Whatever my husband has, I think I might have caught it. It's a risk we take when we fall in love--communicable affections.

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